Design Field Notes

Design Field Notes

Design Field Notes

Interior spaces

Swedish Inspiration: Svenskt Tenn

One of the wonderful benefits of having a beautiful Swedish wife is that I get to visit the country often. And without a doubt, it is definitely one of my favourite travel and inspiration locations – the Swedes just get things right.

When I’m in Stockholm I always pop into Svenskt Tenn – After Ikea it’s probably Sweden’s most famous and most loved homewares brand.

Opened in 1924 by Estrid Ericson, an art teacher from Hjo the company built its reputation with pewter artist Nils Fougstedt offering of modern pewter objects at reasonable prices. Pewter was one of the most exciting materials of the era and Svenska Tenn’s first work was rewarded in 1925 when they earned a gold medal at the World Exhibition in Paris. 

Many years later in the late 70’s the brand was taken over by Ann Wall, who transformed Svenskt Tenn in the business it is today. Ann commenced broader collaborations with artists and designers and moved into new design categories. 

Today the brand offers over 50 product categories from textiles to plates, vases, furniture, lighting, accessories and literature. 

To me the textiles and wallpapers are the standout. The vintage botanical images are so punchy and are gaining so much attention around the world at the moment. The furniture is also very unique and further accentuated by the bold colours and patterns of the fabrics. 

My favourite pieces are the Bag Minii Manhatten Linen (that I bought for my wife!), the Textile Grona Faglar Cotton, the Cabinet 2192 or the Knot of Friendship candle holder.

Because they don’t ship world wide, nor have much distribution outside of Sweden, I recommend that when you’re next in Stockholm get into their store – I’ll be there over Xmas. Or better yet, just check out their website for inspiration. 

Anthony Spon-Smith